Creating a C’tan Shard

The C’tan Shard of the Void Dragon is one of the most technically and visually impressive models we’ve ever released. We caught up with Darren Latham, who designed this stunning representation of a fragment of a star god, to talk about creating and painting it.

Designing the Model

Darren: I received some great concept art from one of our studio conceptualisers, Dave Ferri. His ideas led me to this final design of the C’tan Shard of the Void Dragon. I tried a few different poses out before settling on the imposing feel that it’s advancing.

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One of the things that I wanted to achieve was to make the miniature hollow in order to make it visually interesting and distinctive. This was a challenge for me, as I also wanted the model to be robust and sturdy – ideally, I wanted it to have no wobble to it when you pick it up and to be easily transportable.

The composition of the miniature was very important. I wanted the C’tan Shard of the Void Dragon to be literally breaking up the ground around him, displaying the colossal power the star gods once wielded. The lightning also adds to this effect, whilst at the same time levitating the shard above the ground, giving it a supernatural feel.

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The almost digital texture that seems to be phasing in and out of reality was fun to create. This adds to the unnatural feel and creates voids in the model so that you get the full benefit of the hollow look I was going for.

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The wing veins also add to the composition, drawing the eye to the head, which is always a focal point for any model.

Painting the Model

Darren: Painting your own sculpts is always a fun learning experience. I’ve recently started a new Necrons army to coincide with the release of the latest edition of Warhammer 40,000, so I thought it would be great to include the C’tan Shard of the Void Dragon as a centrepiece for the force.

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I painted the miniature in sub-assemblies, which made it more manageable as a project and also much easier to paint, as the model is quite intricate.

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My army’s colour scheme has a much cooler green than the usual bright green seen on many Necrons, and I included this throughout the model on the lightning and digital texture. I really wanted the model to pop out when on the battlefield amongst the rest of my Necrons army, so I went for a super bright, almost chrome, finish on the body. This was done by first spraying it with Leadbelcher, then layering up many thin coats of Stormhost Silver. I shaded that with a mix of Ardcoat and Gryph-Charger Grey, then a mix of Ardcoat and Black Templar. The gloss varnish that Ardcoat adds to the mix keeps the shine I wanted on the body without dulling the metals.

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The spear was painted with an almost celestial feel to it in order to reinforce the otherworldly appearance. This was done with a small sponge to create a random star texture. 

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As you can see, I have very warm brown bases on my Necrons to contrast heavily with the cool greens seen throughout the army. This really helps create a visually striking finish and is always a nice trick to play when army painting.

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Thanks, Darren! Have you painted the C’tan Shard of the Void Dragon yet? If so, we’d love to see it – use #WarhammerCommunity to bring it to our attention on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. If you’ve not picked up the model, but have been inspired by Darren, you can order it now.

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